New Acquisition: Aristotle’s Compleat Masterpiece

Aristotle's Masterpiece Interior

Aristotle's Masterpiece Title

Newly acquired by the University of Iowa for the John Martin Rare Book Room, Aristotle’s Compleat Masterpiece and the other works included here — considered “the first sex manual in the English language” — were not, in fact, authored by Aristotle. Rather, attribution of the works to him was a way to gain an air of authority. The Masterpiece (“in three parts, displaying the secrets of nature in the generation of man”), was first published in 1684, reprinted with great frequency through the 17th and 18th centuries, and was still being printed in England in the 1930s. The edition here is from 1763. The first part covers anatomy, sex, virginity, marriage, pregnancy, midwifery; and religious warnings against polygamy and adultery. The second part continues with the processes of fertilization, pregnancy, infertility, failed pregnancies, and how the sex of the fetus can be determined.

Aristotle’s Compleat and Experience’d Midwife (this edition from about 1765) was an early manual of obstetrics and the disorders and diseases of women in pregnancy and childbirth. It was supposedly “translated” by popular author William Salmon. The Book of Problems (first published in 1595) was a series of questions and answers relating to natural history, rather than human reproduction. Aristotle’s Last Legacy was essentially a condensed version of the Masterpiece.

Come visit this book, or any other of over 6,500 items of antiquity and rarity, in the John Martin Rare Book Room!

Aristotle's Masterpiece Interior

Track Scholarly Impact: H-Index, Impact Factors & Eigenfactor | Workshop @Hardin Library Tues., April 19, 10am

Eigenfactor logo

Eigenfactor logoThis class will teach participants how to use tools such as Ulrich’s, Journal Citation Reports, Web of Science, and Scopus to determine the impact that journals, articles, and authors have had on a particular field. Topics such as impact factors, Eigenfactors, and H-indices will also be discussed.


Workshop held:
Tuesday, April 19th, 10-11a – East Commons, 2nd Floor, Hardin Library for the Health Sciences

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all University of Iowa-sponsored events. If you are a person with a disability who requires a reasonable accommodation in order to participate in this program, please contact Janna Lawrence in advance at 319-335-9871.



Special Collections Update 4/8/2016

cover2Newsfeed: Blog post: Updates on History of the Book: The Game by Amy Chen. Blog post: Felicia Rice and Guillermo Gómez-Peña Artwork Doc/Undoc on Display. Iconic artist Corita Kent profiled […]

Prickman honored with Arthur Benton University Librarian’s Award for Excellence

Greg Prickman, head of Special Collections at the University of Iowa Libraries, was honored March 31 with the 2015 Arthur Benton University Librarian’s Award for Excellence.

The Arthur Benton University Librarian’s Award for Excellence recognizes a member of the UI Libraries’ professional staff who has demonstrated outstanding commitment and leadership in furthering Libraries’ mission serve the University community.

The honor includes a $1,500 award for professional development that will support the recipient’s research projects or publications related to library services. This award was made possible by an endowment from Dr. Arthur Benton, Professor Emeritus in the Department of Neurology, University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics.

In letters of support for this award, the selection committee noted Prickman’s commitment to furthering the Libraries’ role in the University’s academic mission, as well as his professionalism and responsiveness to researcher needs.

Timothy Barrett, Director of the University of Iowa Center for the Book and Associate Professor in the UI School of Library and Information Science, nominated Prickman for the award. Barrett notes that Prickman’s work “resulted in the UI being selected as the site for the Folger Shakespeare First Folio traveling exhibit. Greg’s leadership shines in the midst of a complex but very promising event for the UI Libraries, all participating units, and the UI overall.”

Prickman also earned praises from Adam Hooks, Assistant Professor of English, who notes a climate of accessibility that Greg has created for scholars.

“Greg’s vision for the library has transformed the learning experience for students at the University of Iowa,” says Hooks. “Thanks to the significant digital projects sponsored by Special Collections, the intellectual and material resources at Iowa are accessible to students around the world.”

 Jennifer Burek Pierce, Associate Professor in the UI School of Library and Information Science, writes of Prickman’s ability to empower his staff to assist researchers. Burek Pierce notes that “those with whom we work in Special Collections clearly feel empowered to do their best work, to look for interesting and new ways to connect with users. As the head of Special Collections, Greg is instrumental in allowing this to happen, in the example he sets, in his development of responsive policies, and in hiring.”

The Arthur Benton University Librarian’s Award for Excellence Award is given annually. Past recipients include Kari Kozak, Jen DeBerg, Dottie Persson, John Forys, Edward Miner, Kathy Magarrell, Kären Mason, Dave Martin, and John Schacht.

It’s National Library Week!

April 10th through the 16th is National Library Week.
The theme this year is “Libraries Transform!”



National Library Week is a national observance which is sponsored by the American Library Association (ALA). It occurs in April and all types of libraries from across the country participate.

In the 1950s, research began to show that Americans were spending less time reading and more time with television and radio. ALA and American Book Publishers formed a nonprofit organization called the National Book Committee. In 1957, they developed a plan for National Library Week and the first was observed in 1958 with the theme “Wake Up and Read!” National Library Week was observed again in 1959 and it was then decided to make it a yearly event. ALA took over full sponsorship in 1974 when the National Book Committee disbanded.

So, what do we, your Engineering Library, provide for you?

We have all types of resources that can ‘transform’ your studies. We have books, journals, e-resources, DVDs, Tool Library, subject guides, handbooks, and more – all accessible from our webpage. We are constantly getting new resources, too. We have a New Book Shelf where you can browse a selection of our newest acquisitions. Another way to find out what is new in the library is to check our Pinterest page!

We also have two group study pods (one with MediaScape), two scanners, 35 ITS computers, comfy chairs, study carrels, bean bag and gamer chairs, and our lower level is a designated quiet space. We are always looking at ways to improve our space and help you find the resources you need.

We are also connected to your favorite social media! Besides Pinterest, follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

National Library Workers Day is recognized on April 12th this year. Take a moment to thank a library employee!

Happy Library Week – we look forward to seeing you!


Celebrate National Library Week. 2016. American Library Association.

National Library Week Fact Sheet: ALA Online Message Book. 2016. ALA American Library Association.

Other Resources:

I Love Libraries.


Organize your references | EndNote Desktop workshop @Hardin Library | Tuesday, April 12, 2pm


endnote_logoEndNote is a reference management tool that helps you to easily gather together your references in one place, organize them, and then insert them into papers and format them in a style of your choosing.

This session will walk you through the basics of using EndNote to collect and format your citations. The class will be hands-on and there will be time for questions at the end.

EndNote Desktop is available free to University faculty, staff, and graduate students.

Our next session:

Tuesday, April 12th, 2-3p – East Commons, 2nd Floor Hardin Library

Register online

Data Management Presentation!

Open Data From NOAA and Its Grantees

April 21st, 2016
10:30 to 11:30 a.m.
Iowa Memorial Union, Illinois Room (348)
Presented by Jeff de La Beaujardiere
Sponsored by University of Iowa Libraries and organized by Library Research Data Services


The United States National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) generates many terabytes of data every day. Data comes from hundreds of sensors on satellites, radar, aircraft, ships, buoys, and from numerical models.

With rare exceptions, all of this data should be made publicly accessible in a timely and usable fashion. NOAA has long been both an advocate and a practitioner of Open Data. Recent White House mandates are expanding public access to the results of federally funded research. In addition, NOAA has initiated research and development agreements with several cloud computing providers to explore new methods for data access and use.

Jeff will address these NOAA policies and activities during his presentation.

Head shot 2015-12-16_crop

Jeff de La Beaujardière

Jeff de La Beaujardière has been the NOAA Data Management Architect since May 2011 and Chair of the Environmental Data Management Committee since 2012. He also serves on inter-agency and international groups aimed at enhancing data sharing and interoperability, including the international Group on Earth Observations Data Management Principles Task Force, the US Group on Earth Observations Data Management Working Group, and the Open Geospatial Consortium. In these roles he works toward the vision that NOAA’s rich and unique data holdings shall be discoverable, accessible, well-documented, compatible, and preserved for future use.

Previously, Jeff was Senior Systems Architect for the US Integrated Ocean Observing System Program Office at NOAA, where he guided the implementation of interoperability standards by IOOS partners for data access and discovery. Prior to joining NOAA, Jeff spent 13 years at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center in such roles as Geospatial One-Stop Portal Manager; web services developer for the Modeling, Analysis and Prediction 2005 project, the GLOBE Program, and the Public Use of Remote Sensing Data Program; and NASA’s representative to OGC and to the Unidata Policy Committee. He participated in the first OGC Web Mapping Testbed in 1998, implemented the first Web Map Server at NASA, and was Editor of the WMS specification for OGC and the International Organization for Standardization.

Dr. de La Beaujardière holds a BA in Physics (1985) from the University of California at Berkeley and a PhD in Astrophysics (1990) from the University of Colorado at Boulder.

This presentation is organized by the Library Research Data Services. The Libraries’ Research Data Services, in collaboration with other campus offices, including the Division Sponsored Programs, Information Technology Services and Iowa Informatics Initiative, support data management needs of researchers.

Please RSVP at

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all University of Iowa-sponsored events. if you are a person with a disability who requires a reasonable accommodation in order to participate in this program, please contact Sara Sheib in advance at 319-335-3024.

University of Iowa Alumni Association “Lifelong Learning” event

The University of Iowa Libraries is proud to present an exhibition of materials and experiences related to the work of UI alumnus and faculty astrophysicist James Van Allen, 36MS, 39PhD. The UIAA invites you to join Greg Prickman, head of UI Libraries Special Collections, as he guides you on a tour of the Main Library’s new gallery space, featuring an exhibition of Van Allen’s stellar career. Artifacts, writings, photos, and recordings launch visitors into the heart of the Space Age to tell the compelling story of the Iowan’s groundbreaking discovery of the Van Allen Radiation Belts.

WHEN: Wednesday, April 6, 2016, 6 p.m.
WHERE: The University of Iowa Main Library, 125 W. Washington St., Iowa City
COST: This lecture is FREE and open to the public; however, RSVPs are encouraged.

Pre-registration for this event has ended, however, walk-ups are welcome and may register at the event.

See more at:

Details found here:

4/4/16 = Square Root Day!!



April 4, 2016 is Square Root Day – so let’s get to the root of it!!

The next square root day won’t be until May 5, 2025, so let’s celebrate! There are only nine square root days in a century – so don’t miss this one!

The square root is an important mathematical concept used in many different occupations – including carpentry, engineering, architects, landscapers, and artists and designers. So, what is a square root? The square root of any number (x) is equal to the number (y) that when multiplied by itself or squared returns the first number (x). In other words, the square root of x is y, because x X x or x²2 is y.

Did you know that the symbol for square root (√) is called the radix or the radical sign? And Christoff Rudolff first used it in 1525?

Maurice Machover wrote a proof poem of the irrationality of √2:

Double a square is never a square, and here is the reason why:
If m-squared were equal to two n-squared, then to their prime factors we’d fly.
But the decomposition that lies on the left has all its exponents even.
But the power of two on the right must be odd: so one of the twos is bereaven.*


What fun ways can you find to celebrate this auspicious day? 

How about:
  • Square Dancing
  • Learn to tie a square knot
  • Eat square shaped food – made from root vegetables (what else!?). How about square sweet potato fries, make a square carrot cake!
  • Try root vegetables you might not have eaten before: rutabagas, parsnips, yucca roots, and kohlrabi.
  • Onions, garlic and ginger are also root veggies – find new recipes

Be SURE to come into the library and work on our Color by Numbers (Engineering Style!)



*breaven is a derivation of the word “bereave.”


Fun Holiday – Square Root Day. 2016.

Flannery, David. The square root of 2: a dialogue concerning a number and a sequence. 2006. New York : Copernicus : [Chichester, England] : Praxis. Engineering Library QA247.5 .F53 2006

Other Resources:

Square Root Day. 4/4/16 Opening Day and Square Root Day!! Square Root Day. Date accessed March 25, 2016




Disover U.S. Patents, Trademarks, and Patent Applications |Workshop Tuesday, April 5, 1pm @Hardin Library


The purpose of this hands-on class is to introduce several resources found on the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office website that may be used to locate information on patents, trademarks and patent applications. Google’s patent searching feature will be also be highlighted as a source for finding information on patents. Taught by Kari Kozak (Head, Lichtenberger Engineering Library).


Tuesday, April 5th, 1-2p – East Commons, 2nd Floor, Hardin Library for the Health Sciences